tv Washington Journal CSPAN September 28, 2013 7:00am-10:01am EDT
on the u.s.ssion postal service. legislation in congress and how the agency could be impacted by government shutdown. we are joined by federal times senior writer, shawn wryly. "washington journal" is next. ♪ host: the house meets at 10 today, considered to discuss the funding bill. at this hour, no indication that the house will take it up as is or if it will be amended in send back to the senate. several of the papers this morning reporting that senator said that senator ted cruz of texas met with house republicans, encouraging them not to pass the senate bill. the wall street journal reporting that 60 house republicans want speaker boehner to attach a one-year delay of the health-care law to the spending bills. two days until it possible shutdown of government.
your thoughts on not only what could happen if the government shuts down but your thoughts on if it should or not reviewed here is how you can reach out to us -- or not. here is how you can reach out to us. @cspanwj on twitter. facebook.com/cspan. and you can send us e-mail, email@example.com. newspapers highlight will happen over the next couple of days. from the front page of "the post " --
joining us to give us a sense of what could happen, the leadership editor of "roll call." thank you for joining us this morning. let's start with the house. s speakere boehner has regarding the short- term funding bill. guest: republicans are scheduled to meet at noon today. i think that is going to be a pretty important meeting. they have to decide as a behind ae, do they get specific alternative to send back to the senate? they have some choices here. they could just take up the senate bill, put it on the house floor, and it would probably pass with mostly democratic
support. a lot of republicans would not vote for it because it doesn't the fund -- doesn't defund obamacare. or they could polut on a rifle shot, something smaller like a delay. there are things that they could considerably do -- conceivably do. harry reid has said they are not going to accept anything that is related to obamacare. of,e is also the question even if they do agree on something and can get it through the house, whether they can get it through the senate. once it gets over there -- the way the senate works, anyone senator ken delay it till four days -- anyone sentence her --
any one senator can delay a bill for days. entirely clear that a bill would be fund by the president and can get through the senate. host: some of the papers saying ted cruz and mike lee have been meeting openly with house republicans. (202) 737-000 guest: absolutely. there were house republicans on the floor cheering on ted cruz and the company. it does not take that many votes on the outside to really handcuff the speaker. if he wants to pass something
that has a republican wish list item on its he is not going to get any democratic votes. he is going to need republican votes. if 18 or 30 republicans are sort ,f in this defund or bust mode that limits speaker boehner's options. conceivably he could go into that meeting at noon today and say, we have three choices. we can all agree to do something that we think can pass the , we can let the government shutdown and be blamed for it, or i can put the senate bill on the house floor and see where the votes are. we have to decide which would go. host: i suspect part of this
thinking, he has to figure out which group he has to appeal to the most. guest: i think that is right. there are a lot of republicans in the house who are not happy with ted cruz, not happy with his strategy, who want to keep the government open, who want to at least have some kind of vote --have their constituents their conservative constituents feel like they doing something about obamacare. i guess that is where a lot of republicans are. they want to see something done that shows there fighting obamacare. they also do not want to shut the government down. i know the speaker really does not want to shut the government down. he has been resisting this idea of having some kind of shut down of obamacare for over two years.
it is not clear how strong he is as far as being able to put something on the floor that could potentially have its own conference -- have his own conference turn against him. this they connected decision to the future of the speakership as far as john boehner is concerned. guest: absolutely. this is the one thing that congress, despite all of the crazy we have seen in the past couple of years, the one thing they have been able to do and, sometimes making it past the deadline, they have prevented the government from shutting down. there are a number of --servatives who certainly who have been agitating for a tougher stand.
close toer came pretty losing his speakership this year. they had a number of defections when voting for the house speaker on the floor. you cannot lose that many more. a problem for the speaker, if he wants to stay .peaker for much longer he is caught between two very difficult positions. isther very important issue how do you deal with this bill and in a few days how do you deal with the debt ceiling bill? that is potentially a bigger issue for the economy. an even bigger issue for john boehner. if that bill goes through clean as the democrats are demanding,
that would be a bigger problem .or the speaker if you pass a clean debt ceiling bill, that is potentially a lot more problematic. host: stephen dennis covers leadership in washington and talks about the latest. your thoughts on it possible shutdown, we stand two days now. -- on a possible shutdown, we stand two days now. our first call is from michigan on the democrats line. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call.
when i tuned in this morning, it was a breath of fresh air. rocky called the republicans out. all he did was ask them one question and he scurried back into the darkness. it is just sad that a few people think they can hold our government hostage like this. the american people are tired of it. we are tired of them messing with the economy. up next republican line of from fort lauderdale, florida. caller: i'm beginning to think we ought to look into dividing this country up. want to livee that off each other and live in one part of the country and all the people that want to pull their the people that want to be victims and think nothing is therefore -- their
fault can live in one part of the country and people who take personal responsibility can live in a different part of the country. thinking of people that if the government cannot do it it cannot be done is going to kill the spirit of this nation. became great because of what obama wants to did say and it became great because of what he isn't doing. host: let's hear from thomas in san antonio, texas. caller: i do know that once you have rung up a bill you must pay that bill. that is common sense, basically. is a faction of our government that basically is theg things because of
president of the united states. we cannot function in a situation where we could affect a world economy in a negative way because of this. there really is only one solution, that solution is 2014, put people in office that will , thatmise and negotiate will look forward into the future. the president of the united states said it is first state of the union address that it is time we represent our constituency instead of our own stuff interest -- our own self- interest. thank you for taking my call. host: off of facebook this morning --
there are the social media aspects. the president's short statement on issues not only concerning iran and syria but also talked about what is currently going on in congress when it comes to passing the short term spending bill, when it comes to the debt limit. here is talking about the congressional dispute with congress and specifically talking about what our reporter referenced earlier, the future decision on if or not to raise the debt limit. [video clip] >> i will not negotiate over congress's responsibility to pay the bills that have already been left up. voting for the treasury to pay
america's bills is not a concession to me. favor, not doing me a but is simply carrying out the solemn responsibilities that come with holding office up there. can be more how i clear about this. nobody gets to threaten the full faith and credit of the united extract political concessions. no one gets to hurt our economy and millions of innocent people just because there are a couple of lawsuit not like. -- of laws you do not like. i'm not going to start setting it president -- setting a precedent not just for me but for future presidents where one chamber in commerce can basically say each time there needs to be a vote to make sure
the treasury pays its bills, we are not going to sign it unless our particular hobbyhorse get in fast -- gets advanced. host: democrats line. comment onanted to how i see this as corporations ruling. i see this as the insurance companies and those companies that are tied to them, with their corporate greed, they don't want things to change when they have to use more money for the people. jobs are laying off people. all that is is greed. people allow it and they go around and say that we're cutting our jobs and started at the president. we should be angry at the corporations. we should be putting laws in place to keep that kind of stuff
from happening. they do not care about america. the care about the bottom line, which is what capitalism is all about. i am all for capitalism. it has been reined in up until the last couple of centuries -- not centuries, but decades. i think people are except the -- are upset about the wrong thing. they should be getting corporations in check. >> from louisiana on our republican line this morning. good morning, go ahead. rumors onre a lot of the internet as far as what is true and what is not true. i do know for a fact that there are some groups that are exempt from the individual mandate. i've heard there are other i've heardon't know, it is a violation of the faith faith to have individual mandate because it is considered -- whether that is
true is neither here or there. if any group is exempted from the individual mandate, why can't i sue the federal it's not forr -- to have one group under equal protection of the law. you cannot have some groups subject to a law and some that aren't. i don't know how the federal government can get away with picking and choosing who gets the mandate. what president obama says he is cutting the deficit more than it has ever been cut in the past 30 years, people need to realize that the deficit was running at $300 billion when george bush was office -- was in office. obama runs at up to $1 trillion and cuts it down to five hundred billion dollars. he is still spending more money than george bush. he has spent more money in five and a half years than george bush did in eight. he calls george bush
responsible. --the new york times op-ed from brooklyn new york on our independent line. just calling to say that i don't think that the government should be taking hostage like this. cannot let them do terrorism. they did -- they deliberately did not negotiate with the democrats all year long so that when these point came up, the debt ceiling and continuing resolution to keep the government funded, they now have rough -- now have leverage points.
even if president obama wanted to, he cannot given to them. when the next president comes in, whoever is in charge, this is what they are going to do. this will be the new norm. you cannot govern like that. as far as the last cover -- the last caller from louisiana, this is what happens when you let influence those people with their rhetoric. that is aobamacare, solution, a republican solution. that is what it is all about. everybody poll their full weight. host: mark is up next on the
line for democrats. sayishou they just come together and keep the government running. they can always debate these issues after. this is a big law, this health- care law. take a lot -- there are a lot of thugs in. they need to work it out, anyway. it is not going to be ready to go right away anyway. instead of closing the just come together here and work this out and then to -- and then have your debates after that. the thing on my mind, i have to ask myself and i am sure every other american has to ask himself the same question, should every american be entitled to have health -- healthyucca
here is carl from pennsylvania on the republican line. caller: good to see you on saturday again. i was just wondering whether or not the white house and harry aboutre just feeling bad the rest of the world being jealous over us being exceptional. the white house will spend us into oblivion and make the world happy again. i don't know if that makes sense but that is the way i feel host: it. host:how did you come to that conclusion? --the way i feel it. host: how did you come to that conclusion? caller: watching c-
span every morning and watching other shows. hear next from kurt in wilmots, ohio on the independent line. caller: first of all, i would like to say that i really appreciate c-span's coverage, being able to watch some history being made over the past week or two, we appreciate it. i am calling is the attention for a government shutdown. some of the services that they are offering that the government provides for the citizenry, i am wondering if they are going to be able to continue it if shutdown. for instance, with the fbi be able to continue to smuggle half $1 trillion worth of dope it to the country? what the white house be able to fund back and train al qaeda?
would the epa be able to continue shutting down plants outside of law? would eric holder be continue to be able to continue smuggling weapons -- be able to continue smuggling weapons to the cartel in mexico? will hear next from shirley in detroit, michigan. i'm hoping they don't shut down because there are too many people in america that either work for the government or are either the disabled. i don't know how many americans are fed up with this particular type of congress we have. they are a total embarrassment to this nation. ted cruz down there in texas got up there and talked for 21 hours about why he wanted us to defund obamacare.
look at how many americans in this country needed to have health care insurance. the bill don't realize that you can go to the hospital for a day and you may have a $10,000 or more ill and if you don't have insurance -- or more bill. if you don't have insurance, you are going to get something in the mail saying you have time to pay it back. i have never, in my life, have seen this type of congress that allows these people to get in at 2010 -- that is when the mainstream got in there, in 2010. it is not about you, me, any of your relatives among no one from the east coast or west coast. it is time for every american to
stand up and get serious about these men and women that are elected and being sent to this congress in d.c. because we need people who are intelligent. host: we are going to continue on on our calls. you heard from the president previously. we now hear from the house republican conference chair delivering the weekly address and the republican response. she discusses the republican plan among which includes increasing the debt limits while addressing issues of spending. [video clip] >> the best way to preserve the full faith and credit of the united states is by strengthening it. coupling an increase in the debt limit with efforts to rein in spending is common sense, so much so that it has been used by presidents from both parties.
1985.ent reagan did in five years later, president bush reached a budget deal with a democratic congress that included a debt limit increase. president clinton reached a similar agreement with a democratic majority in 1993. finally, president obama himself worked with republicans on a large deficit reduction deal tied to the debt limit in the summer of 2011. it has its flaws, including the ofuester the president biased and insisted on. it has cut spending. -- the president has devised and insisted on. it has cut spending. he wants to take the easy way out.
exactly the kind of foolishness that got us here in the first place. as we know, it is hard working people like you who will ultimately pay the price for business as usual through higher taxes, higher prices, and fewer jobs. to reiterate, every major episode reduction effort of the last dirty years has been tied to the debt limit. this time should be no different. host: let's hear from read in union, washington. i first want to say my biggest frustration and listening to c-span is all of me" people. give try to keep what you made from it radical government to redistribute it. rand came from communist
russia. she says greed is when someone else want something what you have. the democrats wanted to flip this nation to 51-49. . will vote for a paycheck from the treasury, we will move towards socialism. this is about the left trying to change the face of this nation, the president is to radical, the leftist radical. i want to remind america that the republican party was founded as a split from the whigs. .hat party was status quo our nature has been a center- right nation. the president is the one obstructing everything. the people voted the house.
time, c-span.the but i am really tired of this "gimme gimme" people. the hell with the debt our children have. host: here is claudia on the government -- on the independent line. you have people with their homes, they lost their homes. [inaudible] that's how dysfunctional the white house's. obama says he wants to work with them. why aren't they working with them? host: a couple of international concerning iran and syria. it was iran in which president
obama made a phone call to the president of iran, talking about their nuclear program. the white house sending out a tweet of a photo of him on the phone, this is him speaking with the iranian president. the conversation took place yesterday. the papers wrote about it today, including "the financial times." this is the lead story -- we will talk about what happened concerning syria in just a bit.
jackson, mississippi, democrats line. i am concerned about the alito summit in washington dc. -- the elitism in washington dc. i would make sure that they have responsibility again. [indiscernible] greg from kentucky, republican line. caller: i heard different people have their different opinions and my situation is basically i work at the national guard. this particular shutdown, i don't go to work on tuesday. i have a family to take care of.
i understand people have certain opinions as far as how the budget should be. her years keep raising the budget and spending more. they need to come up with an agreement. i don't agree with certain portions of the health care but the budget is everything. if this was a business, the business would be shut down. host: paul from texas on the independent line. -- pauline from texas on the independent line. caller: everybody wants to rant and rave about the republicans. we have a president who should be a leader, which he is not. he goes out on the campaign trail and get the american people worked up, cutting down those republicans that don't want to do anything. he is the one who is saying he will not negotiate. it is going to be my way or the highway.
right now i can understand why the republicans won't work with a democrats and the president because ever since he got and you have the house and senate with the democrats, this whole health-care bill did not exist. they passed it the wrong way. the supreme court supported it but not the way it was written because it was supposed to be for the common people. they told us the whole time that it was not a tax. guess what, when it had to go to the supreme court they argued it was a tax. when they say the supreme court supported the health care bill, that is not totally true.
syria is the other international story we talked about -- secretary of state john kerry went to the microphone and talked about this, here's what he had to say -- [video clip] time sincefirst serious civil war began the security council is spending -- is spelling out in detail what syria must do to comply with its legal obligations. rejectannot select or the inspectors. syria must give those inspectors unfettered access to any and all sites and any and all people. we also wanted a resolution that
would be enforced. again, that is what the security council has adopted. we are here because actions have consequences. and now, should the regime fail to actual there will be called quinces. -- they'll to act, there will be consequences. -- failed to act, there will be consequences. ago, when the syrian regime would not even acknowledge the vast supply of chemical weapons and say they existed, this outcome would have been unimaginable. thanks to our friends and partners around the world, many of whom are here in this room. the security council was shown that when we put aside politics for the common good, we are still capable of doing big
things. host: bbc also highlights the other conditions that are part of the decision made yesterday, saying the un's resolution condemns the use of chemical weapons it does not attribute blame -- john from texas hold line. -- john from texas on the republican line. caller: i want to thank you for given the people an opportunity to express themselves. i think it is time for the states to take their power back from the federal government. there needs to be formed a state convention.
the way i understand it, it takes 32 states to overturn a bill that the federal government has passed. i believe this was done with prohibition. theed to do more study on fourth and fifth amendment. it is one of those that allows the states to come together for a state convention. i believe it was prohibition that federal government passed and the states overturn. through in theo states can come together with a convention. if there is somebody out there
who is read up on the constitution, tommy where i am wrong and where i am right -- tell me where i am wrong and where i am right. how can we get it together? host: gary dance off twitter -- here is bill from georgia. good morning, are you there you go -- are you there? let's move on to stephen from virginia, democrats line. caller: good morning. the government should not shut down. it just does not make any sense.
tea party and republicans just have to get their act together. you should not negotiate obamacare. what they need to do is work together with the democrats. the democrats have already negotiated enough. tear republicans and the party, we always go to the edge of fiscal cliff, the deficit, sequester. they still do not want this president to win at anything. what they need to do is step up to the plate, play ball, get and no moregether, negotiations. let us move this country forward and will or for the people -- and work for the people. when the government shuts down, it is a lot of jobs involved. host: a couple of stories for
don in atlanta, georgia, republican line. caller: how are you doing? host: fine, thank you. caller: i was in the service for quite a while. i realize how the government spends on what they want or what they need. [indiscernible] idea, if we want budget [indiscernible] congressman,ry be in their office there
the story goes on to say that it was a combination of ride and public money that will go towards that. one more call, here is jim from connecticut, on the independent line. if you think your health care isn't that great, why would you revise it and say we're going to be separate from everybody else? we are going to put it off for another year or so, we are going
to be exempt. that is my first point. my second point is harry reid and everybody else has to stop calling the tea party "terrorists." what is wrong with a smaller government? us "tea baggers," during the debate we were called "astroturf," that doesn't solve anything. harry reid refused to bring is the budget and bring up obamacare on the senate floor. that is what people do not realize. a real leader like president obama should be, they should say we are going to put it back for another year. the house and the senate said, you know what? we are not going to fund this.
the american people should not be a part of this. we are going to be putting it off for another year. thank you for your time. we continue on with this conversation. out guest joining us for it will hurt from "the washington times." you heard house speaker boehner conferencing with his caucus. charles hurt will be on for that discussion. ther on we will a dress ongoing investigation at the u.s. naval yard. joining us will be rear admiral john kirby. i wanted to talk about our newsmaker program, which you can see on sunday. moniz on the major climate issues and the role of those issues in the obama
administration. one of the things he did talk about was how the energy department could be affected if the government shuts down. [video clip] >> we may see a government shutdown of a couple of days. how does this affect the energy department? >> this is obviously a very serious concern and we are still hopeful that what we view as an unnecessary disruption will not occur. having said that, we are planning for the eventuality. this will have significant impacts. i should say the department of energy, viewers may not be aware of the scope of their activities. we have major roles in national security, nuclear weapons, nuclear proliferation issues, and we have a lot of classified information to protect. essential security
functions that we will have to maintain. on the energy and science side, it is the same story. we will try to maintain central activities -- for example, we also manage the strategic reserve. we have emergency response responsibilities should in other superstorm comes. -- should another superstorm comes. be ready to respond to what our national security or major impact events -- while we try to curtail things. we are not going to be traveling to conferences, for example. i cannot give you specifics right now, it will depend exactly on how this unfolds.
unnecessary as an activity that impacts our delivery of services to the public. we will hope as best as we can. >> "washington journal" continues. host: joining us as charlie hurt, political columnist. the house meets to consider what happened with the senate bill. what does john boehner face? guest: he faces a fractured caucus. we have conservatives want to dismantleis mental -- the motives this opportunity to mantal,lthisare -- this opportunity to defund obamacare.
they want to pass a clean bill. then you have a large group of people that don't fit into either camp, who would like to see something taken out of -- some advantage made out of all of this. either more cuts or there are some that would like to see fewer cuts, even some among the republicans would like to see some of the sequester cuts that have been remarkably effective in terms of changing the trajectory of spending. they would like to see those decreased. going to be a noon caucus meeting for republicans. i imagine it will be fairly bruising. host: toward mr. boehner? guest: not necessarily animus directed towards him but it is a
very difficult situation. i have no idea how it is going because the two parts are pretty far apart. he has to walk out of there and come up with something. i don't think he is going to put the senate bill on the floor as is. he is going to do something to it but whether he goes and puts but she defund obamacare -- whether he goes and puts the defund of obamacare in it or delay it for a year, that is up to the senate. i think it is an interesting -- that would be an interesting play. it puts a lot of democrats in a difficult situation with all of the bad news and headlines of obamacare. it could put democrats in a tough position. they might actually have to vote for it. i think a lot of americans, it might make sense to them.
president obama has made it very clear that he does not intend to sign anything like that. that is basically the whole that ted cruz races. even if democrats went along with its -- with it, they stuck to pass it. he changed it in a lot of ways. instead of talking about a fiscal fight, which i think republicans would have been on a very firm ground, they talk about the success of sequester. recall, it was all doom and gloom. it was going to end, people were going to be starting in the streets. and that did not happen. president obama referred to this. it changed the directory -- the trajectory of spending.
in my opinion we need to do a lot more. but still, it was the first time they decrease the funding. the problem with the ted cruz you basically have the three branches of government -- ofu have the executive government. you have the executive who likes this bill. you have the supreme court who says, we are out of it. house who wants to defund it in the senate which is still democratic. you need to change the senate and change the white house in order to get rid of obamacare. you can nibble around the edges by doing a postponement or
easing some of the more onerous aspects of it. you still have an election problem. republicans have to address that. host: you can talk to him about possible plans from the house speaker. numbers are on the screen -- senator cruz still speaking yesterday, looking towards the house in the future. here's a little bit of what he -- to say, talking about expressing hope that house numbers don't listen to their constituents about what they want. [video clip] >> we have had numerous conversations but at the end of the day all members of the house are elected by the people in their districts. each member of the house has a responsibility to listen to .heir constituents am confident that if the house listens to the people as they
did last week it will continue to step forward and respond to the suffering that is coming from obamacare. host: he started by saying we have had numerous conversations. definitely still trying to influence what is going on. he and his crew have been working diligently to lobby the house. you have this curious dynamic here. conservatives in the house are scratching their head about it. bill to killsed a obamacare are over 40 times. it was 39 times they have passed a bill to kill obama care and sent it over to the senate where it dies. you have a lot of conservatives in the house who are sitting ted cruz and other republican senators are coming to the house, telling them what they need to do about killing obama care. these guys are sitting here saying, how may times have we
voted to kill obamacare? yourroblem we have is in chamber. you need to lobby your republicans and your democrats. it is kind of an upside down situation. host: off of twitter -- there's nothing the democrats have to do about it. they can sit back and enjoy the show. what we are seeing with all this -- and i applaud ted cruz. what we are seeing here is a very honest debate among republicans. the reason it is so nasty is so nasty andis -- some ofense fight, -
these debates are nothing we have ever seen in our time. what this is, i think, is they have displaced a lot of their problems. both parties have a lot of housecleaning to do. i think republicans are a lot farther along in that process. while it is easy and enjoyable for democrats to sit back and is goings, i think it to be painful and who knows how much longer it is going to be. i do think the result is that you have a more honest, more caucus that isn more in touch with the voters and you had five years or 10 years ago. democrats have the same problem. they just haven't begun cleaning
the house. think there is an appetite among house republicans to lead a shutdown happen? guest: i don't think anyone sees it as anything particularly good. it never really happens, even when you do shut it down you wind up opening it back up and giving everybody back pay. it doesn't change anything. spending thectual problem is what conservatives want is they want to make stopess -- the government being so big and spent so much money. the sequester is the first hiccup in the right direction that we have experienced.
i think that is a great fight for republicans. this, not so much. host: calls start with district heights, maryland. here is tony. to make two quick points. what the house republicans are doing is completely illegitimate. the affordable care act was passed using the same representative democratic process we have had in place for 200 years. it is easy to forget that for most of the history of this country, being born a white maple -- a white male was an achievement or a credential of some kind. these are people, you can see it in their faces, using their voices. they seat with resentment because the president of the united states is black. if barack obama, who is a moderate-- a textbook democrat, there's nothing radical about it.
if he were white there wouldn't be a problem. comment is a ridiculous to suggest this -- it is not worth acknowledging. , io think it's interesting would be interested to know what tony things about the fact that for a lot of americans, the election of president obama was an achievement, it was a milestone that a milestone that a lot of people were very proud of. and for a lot of people, they thought that comments like that would become the were and further between. that is obviously not the case. i do not think five years ago, a caller would have made that remark. i think tony might want to consider that. shriek point,its louisiana, wayne on our republican line. caller: i'm glad to talk to you, c-span, good morning. i want the government to shut down because i'm tired of the
democrats. watched this down, i them do it, they pay people off, backdoor deals, all kinds of stuff, even our own senator in louisiana sold us out. i want us to go bankrupt, i want the country to go downhill to get the democrats off our back. people in this country are suffering. they are suffering right now. and obama has caused at all. he has destroyed our energy program and everything else. we are in dire, straits right now in this country. and american people are realizing little by little, and i do not see anybody in washington trying to help us out. i am for the republican party. thank god for them. and to hell with the democrats. guest: well, i think that is a perfect event will of what the frustration that we see among
republicans. unfortunately for them, it would make a lot of people feel really good just to set the government down and -- shut the government down and move on. the problem is, as i pointed out, republicans are not very good at fighting this fight. they are terrible at it. they wind up losing elections over it. they feel a lot better, i would caution that it would be a whole lot smarter to -- and this is what democrats do very well, they stick to the fight that they do, and they often do very well. if we were over here talking about the sequester, talking about cutting the government, republicans would be on a much firmer footing than -- trying to do something that is not going to
work. ether bomb went off in the senate, and for some reason the defined looking back into the senate, and harry reid got everybody -- everybody voted for in the senate, it is still not going to get approved. you still have to have the president sign it. it is not going to work. it is good at ginning up a lot of good outrage about obamacare, which i am all in favor of, but it still does not work. host: how much of what is going on in the house republicans is dealing with perception from the public? guest: i think almost exclusively, pedro. one of the reasons that this has gotten so caustic among republicans is that ted cruz has done a very good job of drawing attention to this and reminding people who already did not like the bill why they don't like it. theirey have been calling
representatives in the house and in the senate. and literally lawmakers say they take phones off the hook because it is just -- and people are really mad about it. i share their anger about it. so that is where a lot of lawmakers i think feel painted into a corner, even though they want to make the argument that well, ok, then it still does not work. they are getting -- that is not good enough, i think, for a lot of callers. i understand the frustration. it is real. host: california, dennis, independent line. caller: hi, how are you doing ? host: great. iller: i am 65 years old, and have been studying politics since i was 16, and i have never seen anything at all like we are experiencing today. i think everybody needs to
dttle down, take a god ang deep breath, and think about what is going on. i hear these arguments, and the first thing that really bothers me is oh, my children and my grandchildren have to pay all this debt, and in my case, maybe my great grandchildren, but hey, you remember world war i? we are still paying for that. at least we did until the last veteran died. i mean, come on, think about this. this is a government for the people and by the people, and it costs money. a prettyat is irresponsible view of things. us inis a fascinating
cnbc about what happens when interest rates go up, which then verbally have to do, right now the fed has kept interest rates artificially and amazingly low, and one of the reasons is because of their own debt. when those interest rates go up, 7%, soon, they go up to 10%, 15%, so very soon, we are going to wind up paying 90% of every check that goes through the federal government, every bit of taxes that comes out of your paycheck that goes to federal government, 90% of that is going to go to servicing the debt. and that is going to leave 10% to run all of this. it is not going to work. it will not work for a long. know, makingt, you very dramatic, drastic cuts now while we still have some control of things is going to be a lot , you have to make cuts
under a scenario, then you do have people wondering the streets starving. they get very ugly. host: the house budget chairman, at thean, had a hearing cbo, and basically said you look at reagan, carter, they have all had these moments where they have had to deal with these debt limit and use them up for a larger fight on spending issues. is there a difference this time around? as far as waging a battle around this kind of thing? guest: yeah, there is. i honestly think that ted cruz and some of the senators saw the opportunity to generate a lot of animosity toward obamacare, which is great. too --hink that it was you know, republicans do not like to admit this, but we had an election last year, and it was pretty much about obamacare,
and a lot of people do not like mitt romney that much, but they really do not like obamacare, so a lot of republicans stuck with mitt romney because of that, but it was not enough. that,en republicans lost you get back to the drawing board. ted cruz very much change that dynamic here, and neutered publicans'-- republicans' ability to win something real in this fight. because the sequester stays the same in the senate budget. guest: we hope. but honestly the way this thing has been so blown to pieces, even are real efforts -- some of these republicans that are involved in some of this -- that would like to see the sequester turn back because it would mean more money for them to divvy out mainly to defense and things like that.
that is terrifying. the idea that not only would republicans not make further achievements on the one good , or any ofhave done these people have done in the past several years, the idea that not only would you not advance the achievements further but you might even lose ground? you'rethe world -- coming to another government shutdown, these people have run out of money yet again, they come to congress and say we need more money, we have run out of money again. you arenotion that negotiating from a point of strength at that point, but somehow they managed to do this where they wind up in a position of weakness. that is not good for them. host: charlie heard from the "washington times" joining us. call from maryland. caller: i have a few quick
questions, and i have a already, mr. hurt, you run up that we had an election last year, i keep hearing mr. cruz and all this in the american people need to speak, the american people did speak last year, and they said ok to obamacare. the supreme court said ok to obamacare appeared either not know why the remote party wants horse. beating this dead you can saying they have certain things with the sequester. outme ask you, they carve that the republicans did in the --se with the food cans, food stamps, are you aware of the list of republicans who voted for farm subsidies not only for them but for their families while they cut food stamps for the poor, the elderly, and for veterans? are you aware that they have also refused to appoint people
to conference so that the budget could be worked out so we would not get to this point? it all looks like it is predestined to come out this way. 413 plus filibusters in the senate, but the american people are supposed to be stupid and not understand that they're trying to nullify this president -- host: caller, thank you. guest: i feel like she has highlights -- i feel like she highlights perfectly what has become this leviathan problem in washington. you have all of these special interests, and obviously the food stamps and the farm bill stuff -- you know, these are massive interests, but the only way -- throughout history, the only way you have been able to get these things through is by smashing them together so that everybody gets a little piece of the pot. it is a disgusting way to run government. it is a disgusting way to take money from hard-working
americans and distributed among people. unjust, way to -- it is it is dishonest, and i think it is why people are so deeply fed up with the entire system. host: here is rotted from north carolina, republican line. caller: i wanted to ask mr. hurt, all the conditions on passing this bill really don't chip away at the entitlements. it seems like the keystone pipeline or a one-year delay would be far better, simply repeal george bush's prescription drug benefit and go forward with the obamacare because the simple he was not a conservative risible by george bush with the prescription drug benefit. guest: that is why so many republicans hate the republican
party is because when republicans ran the tables, that is one of the things that they got. republicans will make the argument that well, we achieved all these savings because of the worksat medicare part d -- whatever. it is still adding to the entitlement space him and the caller is exactly right. this is another tricky thing about this effort to defund obamacare. if we wind up shutting the government down because through this defund obamacare strategy, if that is what you want to call -- many ofll wind up the most onerous parts of obamacare continue to go on. into -- asy sneak entitlements. nobody is really talking about that. the one thing that is going to remain alive after a shutdown will be part of obamacare. host: nancy pelosi yesterday
responding to not only efforts on the short-term funding bill, vcr, but also talking about the future fight coming with the debt limit. here is what she has to say. [video clip] is the full faith and credit of the united states of america, and the other is a priorities debate on spending and saving and growth. everything the republican's are talking about, whether it is not lifting the debt ceiling or making because they want to make without any investments that we we lose oneking -- million jobs as it is with their 988 sequester number, some say 1.6 million. i will be my usual conservative self and say one million on that subject, i most defensible number. so this is silly.
maybe they did not get some orientation on how serious the work is that we do here. , they are a manifestation of what president washington cautioned against put he left office, which political parties that were with their own government. that is what we have wagging the dog, the tail wagging the dog of the republican party. host: charlie heard. guest: -- charlie hurt. when: i was get uneasy politicians talk what the divisive business -- the divisiveness in the history. hassince the civil war tension flared -- that is not exactly right. we have always had a lot of tensions in congress. it is not like we are on the verge of some civil war or something like that.
nancy pelosihat also earlier in the week was talking about how in terms of theing spending, said that cupboard is bare, meaning that here in washington, we simply have no more cuts that can be made. i do not think anybody walking around this place would think that we really don't have anymore to cut. there is plenty more to cut. i think we have had enough of nancy pelosi's conservativsmism to last us. host: clarence in arizona for charles hurt. i am a 60 one-year- old vietnam disabled veteran, and i can tell you it is not the same country is what i fought for. -- i have been listening to all of this, and it is ridiculous. on my disability, there was one good month the government shutdown, i did not get my
check, but that happens. time, ippens again this would be all for it if they get obama out of the office. i'm surprised he has not been impeached by now. he has not kept his promises, he has lied ever since he has been has done, he everything he possibly can to run this country down, so i don't see why he is there. that, while they got the government shutdown, maybe they can take and get some of the people over see now out of the government. perfect example of the problem the republicans have, and that is they have a very enthusiastic base of people that want to see obamacare abolished, president obama drummed out of office and all this -- none of that works
unless you actually get votes at the polls and managed to do it constitutionally. host: what do you make of the strategy on the debt ceiling attacks in this long list of demands of legislation that would increase the debt limit? thet: in theory, i like strategy very much because a lot of the demand are sensible. obviously they're not going to get them all, but it allows them to cherry pick, to sort of negotiate. the argument can also be made, and it is a smart one, that when you put, when you ladle too much of that, too many demands, then you do not get taken quite as seriously. then again, republicans in their negotiating skills have shown taken to terribly seriously about anything lately.
it has also been rendered somewhat of a moot point because -- we are sitting at talking about defining obamacare by not really defunding it. host: at one point, you probably heard, the debt limit was opposed to be the real fight and then take the pass on the cr. guest: i think if house speaker john boehner had his way, and eric cantor, that is exactly what we would be discussing right now because people get the idea that your kid comes back to you 18 times and says i have run out of money again, and at some point you say ok, we have a problem here, we need to address it, we need to get at the root of the problem here. i think most voters, most independent voters, they get that. they get the notion that ok, we cannot keep doing this. it is a winner. republicans actually one on this last year, which obviously means
it is a slamdunk winner. host: and the stakes are higher when it comes to debt limit discussions. guest: absolutely because it does point out the systemic problems that are going on. hurt joining us, talking about issues concerning not only be short-term funding bill but the debt limit and other things dealing with the house and the senate. the house meeting today, john boehner meeting with the caucus at noon today. jackie from leesburg, virginia, democrats line. caller: good morning third i cannot tell you how frustrated i am that was again we have another conversation about the debt ceiling, the sequester, the continuing resolution. it is frustrating. quite frankly it is interesting. i have a question and a comment. i just want to say that for a few years ago, i used to work for home depot, and i did take advantage of their part-time -- i was a part-time employee, and i took advantage of their insurance, and it was expensive and it was not very well cared
to a lot of people who think that the affordable care act for those type of companies that remove that insurance is such a big deal -- it is not. actually it is a great step in the right direction for a lot of our time employees who have that insurance. my question is -- how embarrassing this is to a lot of our other foreign leaders around the world who look at this process and look at people like ted cruz, who will stand on the senate floor for 21 hours and watch our congress vote 40 times to repeal a bill that is already law, what kind of impact, what kind of precedence does that say to other leaders around the world that say the u.s. cannot even get their act together, they are not the right people to do business with. we're going to test and challenge everything they say and do. guest: i guess i had not really , orght about any of that particularly do not think it is that big of a deal. did the yesterday, a lot
of people had a lot of fun with this notion that president obama had opened the chain of negotiations with iran, and the big complaint among republicans in the house is that's he won't -- he refuses to negotiate on the debt ceiling, again, if we were talking about the debt ceiling and of this other stuff, they've had a lot of fun poking that heim in the fact refuses to negotiate with republicans in the house about the debt ceiling, but now for the first time since 1979, we are negotiating with iran. host: according to the wall street journal, majority senate leader harry reid, during the senate until monday afternoon, that would narrow the limit of time for any volleys between the chambers. guest: that is what is going to be the real interesting thing, john boehner has to present in together. he is going to be under immense pressure to do that.
he could come up with something that the senate loves. or he could come up with something a lot more complicated. if it is something more collocated, then it is going to go back to the senate, and harry has sente deviously --rybody home so that exactly to do that, to narrow the window of opportunity. it is kind of like in football when you're trying to run out the clock, whoever is ahead is trying to run out the clock and take their time. that is what harry reid is trying to do and trying to get to the point where they will have time to do virtually nothing more than simply approve --either vote something up or down, and then he is banking on a fact that if it does go to a shutdown, it will be blamed on republicans. indication,s any that is probably a safe bet.
host: one of the possibilities is short-term, maybe a week or so -- guest: that seemed to gather a lot of momentum during the week. for some reason, and i do not know whether -- it could be in the throes of the game -- but it seems that people on the hill are talking less about that and more about the fact that they -- they actually need to come up with a solution that is going to work. know, as wellou as anybody, this being washington and full of politicians, they love the attention. they love everybody -- much like the caller just mentioned, finding this sort of embarrassing around the world. these people love to have cameras on them, they love to be
talking at the microphones. and nothing like a big drama like this to come out, and they love at the lessman to come in and come up with a solution -- at the last minute to come in and come up with a solution and save the day. that happens 95% of the time here. it is hard to see how happens this time, but it usually does. kimberly from washington, pennsylvania, republican line. i am a 50-year-old working woman at minimum wage, part-time, and i was diagnosed with press cancer in 2008 before ,bama was elected again, ok actually, elected the first time. but i am tired of hearing my countrymen tearing up our president who inherited this mess. he did not make this mess, he , henot cause this debt received this when he got the
job. everybody in congress, everybody in the government, they work for us. they are not doing their job, they get fired. but we pay them to screw us basically. enough is enough. either you can't do your job -- get out. guest: well, it is a fair point that she makes, and certainly again the reason so many in the republican base are so frustrated with republicans is exactly what she is talking about where you had this galloping, out-of-control debt that even before president obama was here, even when republicans ran all the tables here in washington. but it is completely incorrect to suggest that president obama -- that we have not seen a massive explosion in spending and debt under this president. thean, i do not have all
figures in front of me, but it is an undeniable fact that it has gotten exponentially worse under president obama. host: there is a story in the "washington post" highlighting issues connected with the launch of exchanges next week. how does this contribute to the overall discussions that we are hearing about the president was the health-care law on capitol hill? we have seen a number of the stories talking about glitches and problems as they are described. guest: because obamacare is not going to be defunded this week, despite the promises that are being made, i think that it has a little bit less of an impact, but this is part of the drumbeat , very negative stories that are coming out. you are hearing real stories about people losing their jobs, real stories about people being kicked off of insurance, real stories -- and of course health
cost continues to go up. in real stories of people having their hours cut from full-time to part-time so the companies are not responsible for their health care. -- rightat amounts to now if there was a vote, polls areest that most voters against obamacare, which these two i think a very interesting possibility, which is this notion of the laying it for a year. i think a lot of democrats, particularly in the senate who face tough elections next year, would be hard-pressed to not vote for that. the president has a ticket he has no intention of signing anything like that. laid aemselves have you lot of aspects of obama care because of these problems, because of the glitches that were not anticipated.
so i think that somewhere deep down there might be some relief in some quarters of the administration if they did just put it off. , think everyone would agree whatever this is, it is a monumental undertaking, and clearly it really did not -- people up here did not really read the bill before they pass it. host: moving into 2014 then? guest: that is the key. if they delayed it a year, by a year, they mean a year and, like, two months to get it after the 2014 election. you and i both know it would never be implemented two months before an election. michael,e is harrisburg, pennsylvania, independent line. caller: good morning. it isicans keep saying hurting the people, it is
hurting the people, when this is not even -- not everybody is even aware of it. we don't even -- the whole public is aware, it has not even been ruled out yet, but everybody should know what is happening. they arele find that all big business people, and they know that every new thing that you are rolling out has its negatives and positives. never discuss anything that is positive about obama care. what is discuss is negative, negative all the time. host: caller, thank you. guest: one interesting thing that is overlooked in all of this is when president obama got very narrowly, but he got it through, he was very careful to make sure that none of it took effect before he face
reelection in 2012, which is kind of why we're in this predicament now. i think they would probably agree that even under the rosiest of scenarios, it is going to be deeply unpopular at the beginning. so president obama did not want to have to face reelection with that going on in the country. so he kicks it until now. the problem is that then you have democrats in congress who are facing reelection, and they don't want to have to run for reelection with this going on. again, we are talking about the troubles facing the republicans. 12 months is a long time in politics, and you know, let's say although this does take effect and it really is as bad , theerybody thinks it is
republicans could wake up in october next year and be looking at a very different playing field with the upcoming elections. host: here is one more call, barry, south carolina, democrats line. caller: thank you for the opportunity. i love c-span, by the way. i have a few statement than a couple of questions. i will try to get it quick because if i don't the phone will get cut off. the first thing i want to say is today is my birthday. guest: happy birthday. caller: i appreciate that. i was thinking about all my birthday wishes, and i was thinking that if i told my wife that i am not going to pay the bills until all my birthday wishes are taking care of, how would she react. the second thing i want to say is about the national media and , they say it is robbins or obama. it is not. we should take care of our
bills. the third thing is about ted cruz. he did a 21 hour stand up, and right after that, he voted for the cr. i do not understand that. vote against obamacare, vote against the cr. my first question was to your promisesbout the false made by conservatives and collecting money and fundraisers stating that what they're going to do is defund obamacare, what do you think about that? my last question is he was saying something about delays, a one-year delay. what happened in years past when it was passed, why did they approve the bill instead of trying to delay it and try to take the a lot the table? guest: that is a very fair point that the caller makes about not
approving the bill. it is the nature of politics --e right now is that conservatives have really good ideas about health care. but you would not know it because the revolt against your are not doing a very good job of proposalsout those for cutting health care costs and things like that. go,ar as the false promises it is a crocs on both of their houses. crux on both of their houses. it would be quite a contest to see who is worse around here about making false promises. host: as far as rich as, i know it is a bad strategy, but -- guest: whatever i say will wind up being somehow wrong, but i -- i think john boehner wind up sending something back that nobody is mondayith, but come
night, it will be down to the wire, and somehow they will arrive at some grand bargain, and it will have once again "saved us" i guess from ourselves. host: charlie heard with the "washington times." guest: thank you. host: joining us to give us the latest in the u.s. navy will be rerouted moral --rear admiral john kirby. a self funding agency operated about a billion dollars of a deficit in the last fiscal year. city bus details on the u.s. -- to give us details on the usps, john reilly of the "federal times" will be along later to explain as "washington journal" continues right after this. ♪
>> who is to say what the cleveland clinic is doing has anything to do with obamacare? well, madam president, the answer to that is -- who is to say? the cleveland clinic is to say. a spokesperson for the cleveland clinic said "to prepare for health care reform, cleveland when it is transforming the way care is delivered to patients." she added that "$333 million would be cut from the clinic's annual budget." >> we know that there are things that are happening right now that we're getting paid less by private and public payers. insurance companies are paying us less, medicare is paying us had anequestration effect on hospitals, the nih
funding decreasing has had an effect on our research, and so we had to decrease our costs still further. and all of this goes into trying to change how health care comes together. it is not one single thing that a, it is not one program, it is a whole series of things that we were doing starting back 5, 6, 7 years ago,, mating in when we in wayne- culminating we decided the changes would be so significant on how we would get paid that we had to be even more stringent. >> cleveland lennay kekua so because group on the future of clinic head tilli because group on c-span's "q&a." >> had a path, it would have nullified laws limiting women's rights. they would no longer be
subjected to wage determination that persists even today, and symbolically, women would have been recognized -- and this is even more important, i think -- both as mothers as well as as workers. and the biggest irony of this story is that it was a well organized, articulate campaign of activist women who engineered the defeat of the e ra. >> the backlash against the women's liberation movement animal-rights -- equal rights a minute. sunday at 1:00 eastern on c- span3 american history tv. "washington journal" continues. ant: a discussion about update on the navy yard shooting and joining us for that discussion is rear admiral john kirby with the u.s. navy, serves as the chief of information. thank you for joining us. guest: thank you for having me, pedro. host: since the navy shooting
took place, as far as the investigation is concerned, what is going on? guest: we just announced what we call a jack manual --judge advocate general manual investigative. it will be headed by john richardson, director of nuclear reactors, and that the investigation will be on a fairly tight timeline. in addition to that, secretary mavis has ordered four rapid reviews right in the wake of the shooting. one was on physical security at our bases, one was designed to set at a little better sen of aaron alexis and a time in the navy, one is to the degree to geth contractors have in touch with the navy when a clear and employee, and another is a writer view on security clearances in general and how the process is supposed to work or how that is supposed to change. that will fold up into a review that secretary defends hegel
ordered last week. mavisare due to sedentary on the first of october. one authority complete, we took a deep dive into aaron alexis' career. the other three are due on october 1. , so therehelp inform are several different reviews and investigations. host: you said aaron alexis' career, does this include his problems as well? guest: not as mental health issues, but he was a reverse -- a reserve sailor from 2007 to 2011, and we dissected those four years to get a better sense of what chris taylor he was, what kind of behavior issues did newly -- did he have, that the navy had to deal with. security, how did
he manage to get in as easily as he did you go guest? guest: because he wasn't authorized navy contractor --king on our defense working on our bases, he had a card that allowed them to get on the base, i have one, too, and he had a building pass to get into that building, building 197, so he had access to the base in the building. host: does you have to pass through some kind of magnetometer or some kind of thing -- in the house of congress community go through metal the sector. guest: because of the access he has, and i have to go through deeper layers of security other than the car to get on base and the access into the building to another swipe card, but no, he had to have had authorized access. host: are there questions about the future of that process because of what happened? guest: absolutely. because of the rapid review we are doing now and the broad
review on security access and clearance in general, we are going to be taking a look at that. do there need to be any changes in the physical asks us that we allow to our facilities? but we need to be careful, too. you have to bouncy security concerns versus access. you don't want to be so restrictive and have so many constraints that business shuts down, that you have got long lines of people trying to get into a base just to get into work everyday. the work of the navy, the work of the military has to continue, therefore you have to strike a very delicate balance between access and security. host: as far as the security clearance, what questions are going to have to be asked? guest: we know how he got his clearance and how it got -- how it was able to stay in effect when he left the navy, and of course we believe that helped him get his job at the experts. what we're looking at -- does the security clearance issuance policy and program need to
change? right now, security clearances held to do -- is designed to rets, notect sec safety. we are looking back and try to determine whether you are going to be a blackmail threat, and other words, if somebody going to try to use your pass against you to get secrets? it is not designed to protect physical safety. designated change? that the criteria need to be amended? highlights, the usaf, was once an arm of the federal government, was spun off into the predecessor in 1990. meeting revenue goals after is bought out in 2007 by providence equity partners for 1.5 million dollars, so some of the questions will be directed how does this firm do business. guest: i think so.
you have to take a firm hand with u.s. isp or do you sis to do the background investigation checks -- with usis. the average length of time on national security clearance check with over 120 days, but bring it to 2013, under 40 days now. guest: is that too fast yo? is a conference of enough? host: have you had direct discussions with usis? guest: not in the navy, no. this is a contract by opm, and edit of their purview, not the navy. the navy got information from aboutho got it from usis mr. alexis in particular. we use the information we got from opm to determine eligibility and eventual approval of security clearance for an individual. these are discussions that opm
needs to have with usis. host: rear admiral john kirby talking with us in light of the navy yard shooting 30 your questions are welcome on one of four lines this morning. (202) 585-3880 for democrats. (202) 585-3881 for republicans. (202) 585-3882 for independent. and for those of you retired or active navy, we want to be your thoughts as well. (202) 585-3883. this is froml, joe, california, public in line, good morning. caller: good morning. i am a retired engineering officer for the united states navy. i can confidently tell you that -- --t: i think the caller caller, are you there yo? i thinking him appeared earners
-- i think he hung up. ernest. caller: i tried to get through on the other part of the program. i got in on the independent line. i do not know if i'm an independent or democrat. we have completed that section. we are talking about security of the navy yard. did you take calls on the other? host: we will. none the less, as far as your investigations go, talk a little bit about the process, i know you have the forward snap reviews, longer reviews going on as well. what is the coordination now between you and the aragon and the department of defense as far as putting together information? guest: the secretary of defense and his staff, he also conducts a deeper dive and review, investigation into all of this. i might add, and i forgot to add this earlier, we are staying
closely aligned with the fbi, who is leading -- code leading the criminal investigative. we are integrated and plugged in with all these investigations, criminal investigation and investigation that is going to be done by secretary defense hagel. it what we're doing start a support and a conflict with those. morning, silver spring, maryland, democrat line. caller: thank you so much, pedro, and thank you, admiral. what i'm wondering is if the navy or any of the other u.s. intelligence agencies have discovered anything concerning s aboutxis' statement being targeted with electromagnetic frequencies. jesset a big fan of ventura, but he even did a program on that, and i know there is a lot of information online. i am wondering, you know, if
that might -- even if he did have some kind of mental illness, if there might not be some credibility to his statements. thank you very much. guest: thank you, ma'am, for your question. that is really more of a question for law enforcement to deal with. the fbi has been looking into his recent past here and what led him to this horrific crime. in cas is certainly supporting cis it certainly supporting appeared we in the navy are not targeting that issue with the investigation that we are going to do. that is really more of a fact- finding it from -- fact-finding investigation about the scene into what we can do to help prevent that. clearly from -- and i am not a psychologist, but it clearly looks like mr. alexis had mental health issues, but i do not know that we are in a position that we could accurately try to depict for you or for people what exactly was going on in his head. host: what about the fact that
he has a serious past misconduct issues but was able to get the clarence he did? guest: we talked about that earlier this week. his conduct issues in the navy were not serious, really, when he went at the things to nonjudicial punishment for, they were fairly my note -- barely minor. only one nonjudicial punishments took and i was drunk and disorderly -- and that was drunk and disorderly conduct. this was an average sailor, certainly not a superstar in the navy, but there was no indication by his conduct that he was going to be capable of this kind of horrific crime. from so that was lynn silver spring, maryland. amex call is peggy from miami, -- our next call is peggy from wyoming, democrat fund. caller: i have a son who is mentally ill, and they say it is
is that people who do the shooting, i guess mentally ill is a bad person? no, they are not bad. they cannot just get the help they need. this man reached out for help, and he never got it. .nd it is so hard at the current of a mentally ill person, we don't approve of things that happen, but they are mentally ill, and they need help, and it is so hard for us to get help for them, and it is so hard for them to get the help because when we go when and we try to get help for them, we are told well, they are unadulterated, they can help an adult,s -- they are they can help themselves paradigm sorry, but they cannot help themselves. you fora'am, thank that. let me express my deep admiration and gratitude for what you are doing for your son.
hard that imagine how must be for you, but also how courageous you are for trying to seek that help, and i would completely agree with you. certainly nobody in the navy or the military wants to label folks that have mentally -- mental issues or mental health issues as bad. as a matter fact, one of the things we're working real hard on as we come out of 10 years of war is to encourage our troops, regardless of tier of service or how long may have been in or how many deployments they have made, if they believe they need to seek mental health counseling, that they do that. we have to work very hard at removing the stigma that is attached to mental health issues inside the military. this came up earlier with respect to the security clearance issue. -- howstion was asked could summary with mental health issues be given a security clearance? one of the things we want to make sure we do is not hold a security clearance over somebody's head as they try to seek mental health care.
we are working real hard at that. we want our people to come forward and to admit that they are struggling with something and to seek the help and not have to worry about the risks to their career or their clearance as a result. there is a fine line that you have to walk there, and as i told pedro, we're going to look at the whole security clearance issue and whether we need to change criteria, but one thing we don't want to do is discourage people from seeking the help that they need. again, my thanks for what you are doing for your son, and my best wishes for you and your family. ness asked on twitter -- is the military reevaluating using private contractors and private screening services? guest: we are going to look at the whole process heard secretary hagel and secretary mavis have made that clear. i would not want to judge what those would lead us to, but we believe it is healthy right now to review the whole issue of security clearance is and how they are granted, how they are renewed and i'd frankly under what criteria they are remote. host: can you do it in-house?
guest: we are going to look at it next. host: washington, d.c., up next, this is joyce. caller: thank you for taking my call. i'm concerned that the way contractors and employees should be fully screened before bringing anything into the government buildings, that includes bulk items, such as what the shooter had on him. i don't think that employees or consultants should be given abbreviated screening. i think they should be screened as we are screened at the airport. it may take a long time, but that is the way the world has become. i just think that should be looked at when you are looking at the whole -- when they went into the schools, kids coming in with those long coats on and the long guns, we are going to have to get away from -- my point is, we need to get away from those abbreviated screening because that is the way the world has
toome, and it is an assault the people that are honest people. they have to treat everybody alike. that is all i have to say. guest: thank you, ma'am. we are asking ourselves those hard questions right now, as i described with the different reviews that are going on. there is one specifically aimed at the physical security to our installations and facilities. we're going to ask those same tough questions. but you also have to find a balance between proper access and 100% security. it is very difficult to get 100% secure him even on a military base, simply because the work of the navy has to continue, which means they will have to be able to get onto the facility, their ships come into their offices to do important work. so we have got to find the right balance here so that we do not completely shut down a date with the work. but your point is well taken, and it is very much one we will be looking at. host: the inspector general
released a report looking at issues on the navy's of the these -- looking at security issues on the navy securities. rapid gait did not effectively mitigate the access control risk of contractors accessing navy installations. first, what is rapidgate? guest: this is a system that we use for lower-level untracked or access, people who do deliveries, that kind of thing, not people like aaron alexis. -- this system that the ig report refers to is not the same contractor system or just read that mr. alexis was signed up under. this is for much lower level access to our facility. we are reviewing this ig report very carefully right now and is determining what, if anything, we need to do a little bit better. we certainly recognize with security, it is a very dynamic rosses, we want to always improve. rapidgate is a system which lower-level contractors are
n short term, temporary access, i would not say accelerate, but an easier manner than having to come -- let's say, you are delivering water to , instead of having to come in and sign a get a visitors pass for every sale they do you deliver water, it will last for 30, 45 days, this rapidgate system allows you to have access for the temporary period of time while you are doing this fairly mediocre contract work. host: is that is a walk in, could they drive a vehicle in? packages? could be bothou to make a be all that. but the system is designed to adapt to the type of deliveries or the type of work eight contractor is doing. it is just at a lower level. the findingsl of in the ig report, and again, we're are still looking at this, it would not have prevented the --ack on the host: so aaron alexis --
guest: he had a common access card, the same card i have, because he was layered -- he was cleared and designed to help us refreshing upgrade, some of the networks at the navy yard. host: and that is more evaluation to get that kind of access. guest: absolutely. his access it not come under the system. next call from north carolina on our line for military. this is gary. hello. caller: hi. was in as gary, and i mental health clinic on a base in panama city. i had bipolar issues and did russian -- and depression issues. i got on a base with a regular dod card. i would go to the appointments, get my prescriptions and things like that run on the base. with my issues, i would never consider ever raising a weapon to another person or harming another person, and hearing all
this about a person with mental health issues -- it just really scares me because i don't consider myself in that category, but i'm afraid anybody else might. guest: sir, thank you again. i will also offer my thoughts for you and thank you for being able to talk about your mental health issues. and for seeking that help and actively going out there and trying to get it. to the previous caller, i would say the same -- we do not want to nor would we ever think of trying to label people who are struggling with mental health issues as bad or sinister or evil. i think we need to be broken or for your before we start -- i think we need to be real careful here before we start drawing conclusions on mr. alexis and what happened. clearly the indications are he was struggling with internal demons. the fbi's investigation is
active here and we do not need to get out ahead of accurate we certainly should not -- the matter what the outcome of this investigation -- get into a name-calling or labeling game when it comes to people with mental health issues. we are coming off of in years of war. we have many troops that are struggling with ptsd and dramatic brain industries -- industry -- injuries. we want them to seek the help because they need to get on that with their lives. many continue to serve with their uniforms in the country. thank you for what you do. host: host: 52 convicted felons received access to navy installations. guest: we will go through the review -- report carefully and quickly. we will be able to talk about it soon. we take the report seriously. we thank them for the work they
have done to point out areas where the system might be able to be improved. where there are gaps, we will close them. we will get better at this. it isthis chart says installation contractor vetting. say three lack the resources to do so and six lacked capability. guest: we are going through the ig report. we will assess what we can do better. security is a dynamic issue. you will always learn ways to improve. to the degree we have made mistakes, we will own up to that. policyho initiated the that trained servicemen are not allowed to carry their sidearms on base? guest: not everybody in the
military is issued sidearms. that is a common misunderstanding. i have been trying to fire a rifle and pistol, but that does not mean i am issued one every day when i go to work in the pentagon. on a normal, daily basis, the and areple armed supposed to be armed are those working in security jobs. these are guards and other security officers on a base or facility. sailor, airman, marine, coast guard men, or soldier carries a weapon every day. there would be no need to do so. our next call for admiral john kirby. caller: this is a great program. i want to commend admiral kirby for trying to strike the proper balance. thelast couple of callers,
gentleman from north carolina and the two ladies, the one with the sun with a mental illness, the shooting of gabrielle giffords or the recent tragedy in the navy yard, the thread of folks with mental illness and guns we have been dealing with this for 20 or 30 years. we've got to have common sense dealing with folks with mental illness. the aclu has had many lawsuits. doctors: psychiatrists are free to report this to proper authorities when they are dealing with. in aurora, he told the psychiatrist what he was going to do. lawguide is not reported to enforcement or anyone out of fear of lawsuits. this has got to change. we are putting innocent people in harms way we allow folks with mental illness to carry guns. it is crazy and it needs to end.
do more people have to die? guest: what you are getting at is not so much how we treat people with mental health issues but the reporting requirements and trying to perceive whether an individual is a threat to himself or others. that is another step. it is not about getting help for mental health. it is trying to assess if someone is a threat. that is a more difficult thing. it is something we will be looking at trying to learn lessons from the case. were there moments when we or his employer had indications he was a threat and whether those bots were reported --thoughts were reported. it is a difficult balance to strike. it is, where do you draw the line? how do you make the determination? we are all going to look to see
if there are things we can do better. host: michael asks off of if possession of personal defensive firearms is being considered for personnel on base. guest: those wearing or possessing firearms are those trained to do it and their job requires them to do it. we still believe that is the right approach. i do not see any change to that governs the degree to which more people have the ability to carry firearms on base. host: bill, a retired navy man from philadelphia, good morning. in 1960 when i went in the navy, i was in the ceremonial honor guard in the at the anacostia receiving station. i had to go through a background
check. in boot camp, i found out the fbi was at my house. had to go through clearance because of our closeness to being around the president and all, so i went through quite a background check. after that, i went on the ship and became a corpsman. when i went to shore duty at a hospital, i became a psychiatric technician. all through my process in the beingry, i know i was vetted no matter what i did because of what my jobs were. aware of what the situations were with mental health when i became that. somewhere along the line, people have said ronald reagan closed all of the mental hospitals. john f. kennedy was the person who started that.
i do not know the bill but he wanted everyone released from mental hospitals. ronald reagan only closed the empty hospitals. people have nowhere to go anymore. in philadelphia, there used to be several mental health facilities they could go to. today that is limited. people are stigmatized by mental that nobeing called matter what it is. i suffer from depression. i have been treated for it and am very happy. this is the point of it. people who stigmatized these i cannot believe in washington, d.c., if they vetted that there are people who do not have backgrounds in mental health and possibly criminal backgrounds. host: we will leave it there. your: thank you for
service and being courageous enough to seek help yourself. i will go back to what i said before. we take mental health issues seriously in the military. the army has done a superb job trying to get after this problem with so many soldiers after 10 years of war. we are all looking at this very hard. there are mental health facilities and services available to our currently and the v.a. is also looking at this very hard. they do a terrific job. i cannot speak for the history, but i can tell you across dod and in the v.a. there is a sharp focus on mental health issues and helping veterans and those currently serving to get the help they need. we are being mindful of the fact that there can be a stigma attached and we're doing everything we can to remove that. from there is a quote
employer of aaron alexis. it is saying, how will they improve security when everyone in the government is being asked to do more with less money? economize whent it comes to safety and security. even with talk of the shut down next week, there will be accepted activities that will still be allowed to go on. those are safety of life, protection of property. we do not economize when it comes to physical security. host: even with sequester cuts? guest: even with sequester cuts. we are not going to penny pinch on trying to protect our people. host: new york, jeff, democrats line. caller: good morning.
hello?, host: you are on. go ahead. caller: i want to make a suggestion that it would be a to search through mr. alexis' rebuttal statement. i'm hearing a lot about his misconduct. ien i was in the military, served in the army from 1980 to 1982, i was made the fall guy in an administrative setting. i was the only clerk. way we were set up, it only required one clerk. i went to the unit after going
to administrative school. i thought the administered of systems were in shambles. . was made the fall guy the one month i was in the unit, ands made the fall guy replaced with a transferee. host: what would you like our guest to address? caller: i would like you to address what brought him to the state of meltdown. guest: we do not know. the investigation is ongoing, the criminal investigation. i would not begin to speculate what was going to mr. alexis' mind. we took a deep look at his time in the navy. an average towas below average sailor who got in a bit of trouble but nothing so serious that would indicate he would ever be a harm to himself or others.
that is what we were responsible for looking for in his time in uniform. that is what we found. host: the next call is on the republican line. caller: thank you for taking my call. my suggestion would be similar to having a policy of no weapons in and out. i know most of the military cards have a microchip or something. my suggestion would be on base if we had designated areas for those personnel that are authorized to carry a firearm, that they get them from a locker thatan access code prevents individuals that do not have the necessity to have a fire on base -- firearm on base to have one. that would mean screening and checking at the gate if you do not have one of those cards.
ie mental health thing, appreciate the compliments made. on the other hand, what is to say a normal person or average joe is not going to do something because you do not know what will make someone snap at any given moment sometimes even over the smallest issues? on base, limited access to those who have necessity for a firearm. guest: thank you for the two points you made. we are looking at security on basis. there are already restrictions to firearms. we will look at this and whether we have policy gaps we need to close. your other point on mental health is a good point. we have to be careful we do not rush to blame on any one factor.
we need to let the investigators finish their work. we've got to remain mindful of not stigmatizing the whole issue of mental health. host: a couple of questions about sequester. the government executive magazine posted a story yesterday talking about ray made mabus talking about sequester. guest: the biggest effect is long-term readiness. we are working hard to make sure our forward deployed forces have all the training, materials, readiness they need to do the job requested of them. they areking sure ready for the missions they will be assigned. when you get beyond those, it gets hard. the next two or three years it will be difficult to maintain a higher level of readiness to
meet all of our missions effectively and efficiently. that is our biggest concern. it is not just about training. it is about maintenance. it willster continues, have an effect on our procurement ability to buy new ships and aircraft. that leads to long-term readiness problems. host: there are production delays that have contributed to major cost increases to the program to build aircraft carriers. if sequestration remains the law of the land, it will have an impact on our ability to contract new work on ships. it could delay the start of other ships that have not begun to be built yet. i am not an expert on the f35 program. host: will the sequester have an impact on teacher purchases? --future purchases?
guest: it will have an impact on just about everything. a quick comment and question. for mostto point out of us on bases, we are .ivilians even the active-duty working in systems command are civilians or come to work in civilian clothes and are not armed. there is a security force and all of that. it is the same setup on every military base. i wanted to ask a question with regards to the history of firearms on military bases. there is a lot of information flying around after this event. some of it links to previous
policies that have been repealed or revoked. one was clinton's changes to firearms on base in 1993. i thought i would ask this. personal have experience or could elaborate as to how policies have changed on military bases over the years with regards to carrying firearms. guest: thank you for your service. i am afraid i do not have much history and knowledge about that. i would not begin to try to speculate about how policies have changed over time. we are looking at all aspects of physical security on base. host: when will you have your full assessment of security? guest: the quick look secretary mabus ordered is due october 1.
i expect we will be able to speak about that and whatever policy changes might emerge as a result of that soon, in the next two or three weeks i would guess. there is a longer-term, deeper jag investigation that will probably take many more weeks to complete. host: our guest has been admiral john kirby talking about navy yard security issues. in our final program, we will look at the postal service, concerns about funding issues. our guest will talk about the proposals being aired as part of the future of u.s. postal service. of the "federal times." we will have that conversation as "washington journal" continues. >> the book tells the story of a
nuclear weapons accident in damascus, arkansas, that occurred in 1980. i use that story as a way of looking at the management of our the firstapons since nuclear device was invented in 1945. i hope to remind readers these weapons are out there, that they are still capable of being used, and there is probably no more important thing our government does than manage them because these are the most dangerous machines ever built. subject has fallen off the radar quite a bit since the end of the cold war. you do not want to hear together -- nuclear weapons and accidental detonation. control" on sunday night.
the online book club is reading "this town." get involved on facebook and twitter. wife guyent wilson's just 17 months after he took office. just over a year later, he remarried. on the first lady's heirs at 7:00 p.m. eastern. >> warren would stand on the top step with her behind him. this was a perfect backdrop for the campaign. it show the human side of the hardys. they did not live in a mansion. they lived in memorial -- a normal house like most of the people who came to hear him speak.
she was a visible part of the campaign. she was always near him on the front porch when he was speaking. she gave interviews to magazines, especially women's magazines. she alternated between being the to being theian homebody, the wife, the caretaker of the candidate, so she knew how politics work. the first lady sunday night at 9:00 eastern. host: our final guest is sean reilly. there have been two hearings taking a look at the postal service, particularly its finances. can you give us a sense of the condition? guest: it is pretty bad. last year it lost $16 billion. this year it is still expected
to lose around six dollars billion. that condition is not expected to improve. host: what are the causes for the loss of money? guest: in a word, the internet. the postal service has suffered electronic diversion. instead of sending a letter, people can indicate by e-mail. they will typically not use the postal service for things it has been served --used for in the past. first class mail has always been the big moneymaker. over the last seven years, that has steadily declined. they have managed to make up some of that lost through increased packing and shipping, but it has not been enough to offset the loss in first class revenue. host: does the postal service received federal money to keep running? guest: a tiny bit to help serve veterans and the blind. it receives no taxpayer money for operating expenses. it is supposed to be self-
supporting. host: where does the revenue come from? guest: it is an odd hybrid in the federal government. it is a federal agency. the employees are federal employees. but it is supposed to be self- supporting. it is supposed to at least break even if not make a profit. in 2013, it took in about $65 billion worth of revenue. 2008, 70 five dollars billion. $69 billion. guest: the revenue took a big hit in 2008 and 2009 and has never recovered. leadership hopes revenue stabilizes around $65 billion. they are in a precarious situation. next month they have to make a $1.4 billion reimbursement to
cover workers compensation payments. they estimate they will have five days of operating cash on hand. you have over 500,000 career .mployees there would be a risk of running out of money in a week or two if not able to pay employees and suppliers. they think that is a precarious situation. us toour guest is with talk about the postal service until the end of the program. if you would like to ask line for, we have a democrats, republicans, and independents. you can also send us tweets and e-mails. let's talk about liabilities. 2012 taking a look at the debt at the end of the fiscal year,
$15 billion. workers compensation billion.es, $17.6 guest: that is long-term liability. this is one of the most contentious issues around the postal service. one of the things congress attempted to do in 2006 is you have an enormous workforce getting older that will retire. the government is responsible for covering health insurance for the retirees. the idea was to create a fund that would cover the cost of future retiree health care. the postal service was about to yearn about $5.6 billion a to cover the future liability. this was unfortunately timed legislation. 2007, revenue started to fall off the cliff.
the postal service has been able to fully pay three annual installments. the next one is due on monday. it has already made it clear it will default on that one. it has only made three of those payments. then congress cut the payment in 2009. they say they do not have the money to do it anymore. in 2011 and 2012, they defaulted on the payments. they will default this time. that liability still shows up on the balance sheet. most of the six dollar billion loss is a paper loss due to the retiree funding obligation. host: it is a quasigovernmental agency, i guess is the best way to describe it. theyivate companies, retool and make decisions to get the best bang for the buck in terms of cost and revenues. how much flexibility does the
postal service have to make its own's decisions -- own decisions to be fiscally in a good way? guest: not as much as leadership would like. they have done aggressive cost- cutting. two years ago, we had a plan to reduce the processing by half. next year the goal is to have it around 230 plants. they have around 32,000 post offices. they tried to begin closing about 3000 mainly in rural areas. they got so much pushback from congress that last year they went to a different agenda where they are reducing the hours of 13,000 post offices, putting many under the leadership of part-time postmasters. they hope to save a lot of money that way. they have tried to negotiate with the four major postal new wage scales
that paid new workers less than current workers make. say theyoint, they have done all they can on their own. they need help from congress. they need to get rid of the retiree obligation. they need to restructure the benefits program. they want to transition new employees away from the current federal pension program that gives you a defined benefit and make it more like the private sector where you have the equivalent of a 401(k). host: congress will have to give them permission to do that. guest: that goes back to the hearings we are talking about. one was on the 19th and one was this thursday. in between the hearings, we had the postal service announcing it was seeking an emergency rate increase. the point of the hearings was to
provide a comprehensive view of the situation. republicans and top introduced bipartisan legislation that would give the at least allow-- it to make a start on what it is trying to do in terms of restructuring to retool as a much more competitive organization. host: we will talk about that in detail. let's take some calls. gary from maryland is on the independent line. caller: good morning. you kind of hit on my question. how much money has been made from the postal department back to congress? or the employee's pay the same social security and health care taxes a normal person plays -- pays? guest: i believe so. one example is medicare.
says theaster general postal service and employees have paid in well over $25 billion into medicare. they are not getting full benefits from that. that would be one objective of making medicare the insurer of first resort. when you ask about how much they paid back, i do not understand. they have contributed about $18 billion into the fund for future retiree health care. is there something else you were thinking of? host: he has left us. we go to amy from toledo on the democrats line. go ahead. caller: i was wonder whether the post office would consider going down to a four or five day work and helpave pensions the people who give the most to our society. are you going to go after the smaller packages and partner up
with amazon or something to generate more business? i know everybody loves the forever stamp, but how much is that costing america when people afford them and use them long- term? host: are you with the postal service? caller: no, i used to work in shipping. we assisted the post office when they had the problem with the powdery stuff. we partnered with them. with security issues for the postal service, when i worked around port authority, if you had a contractor on port authority property or at the postal service, do you have a known employee shadow the contractor for safety purposes like they do with port authority? they started doing that after 9/11. guest: i will take the questions in reverse order. postalt know if the service has employees shadow
contractors. if you go into headquarters, you have to be escorted. i assume they take appropriate security precautions to protect employees and the public. theour earlier questions, postal service is trying desperately to make changes to its current work schedule. terms ofriority in cost cutting is to stop saturday mail delivery. earlier they tried to implement this on their own. saturday mail delivery would have been history by now, although saturday package delivery would have continued. hasress since the 1980's inserted an annual prohibition to the appropriations bill that requires the postal service to continue six-day mail delivery. congress reasserted its authority and told postal service it cannot do it. i am not suremps,
i have seen analysis of what that is costing versus what it is bringing in trade i think the idea is to keep the first-class mail volume as high as it can go. the price of a stamp has only gone up by a couple of pennies since they introduced it. my guess is it probably is not costing that much. they probably see it as a net plus. host: richard is on the republican line. caller: i am glad i was able to get through. i understand the problem for the employees. i do not know how much they make , but they make more than i did when i worked. i would say you have to live within your means. there is only so much money out there. is continuously zapping us taxpayers. i have five post offices within two miles of my house. to theo down the road
new bethlehem post office, the hawthorne post office, there are five of them here within two miles of my house. maybe you could do away with some of them and make one central or have a distance theseed as far as how far post offices should be. i understand it would be a problem because of the way you would have to restructure the mail. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] -- host: thank you. guest: they have tried to close post office is seen as redundant or not profitable. 80% of them did not bring in enough to cover operating expenses. congress has been resistant to eliminating or closing post offices. these are important institutions even if people do not use them as much as they used to. they still did not want the post office to go away. host: perspectives on junk mail.
one says to get rid of it. another says it is the only thing keeping the post office alive. guest: it is certainly helping. just look at your mailbox and see what percentage is junk mail or first-class mail. it has become an important revenue stream in keeping their finances propped up. it has some and growing as robustly as packaged mail. deliver -- consider political mail, in the last election they made a special attempt to grow revenue in that area through direct mail for candidates and political parties. they grew that into the business essentially. it is important for them. what congress wants to do with junk mail, are they a stakeholder in the discussion? guest: they certainly have a
voice in this. the postal service has an advisory committee made up of the mailing industry. the junk mail players are part of that. host: sylvia from tennessee is joining us on the democrats line. 2006, the lame-duck republican congress passed a law which forces the postal service 75 years of health benefits and pensions in a 10- year window. billionounts for $5 each year the postal service has to pay. what the restrict postal service can do in the form of making any money. this was all an effort by the republicans in the lame-duck
congress in 2006 to break the fedex service so ups and would have all the business. privatizething was to the postal service. guest: this goes back to the , the requirement the postal service pay into the fund to cover future retiree health care benefits. was to make sure these benefits were covered for the next 75 years. it was seen as a step in prudent fiscal management. the reason the schedule was so aggressive, why you are trying to fund 75 years in 10 years, was they wanted the bill to show it would have no net impact on the federal deficit. they had to offset some other
expenses incurred by the bill. this was a way to show they would be producing revenues that offset the deficit. 2003, there were over 29,000 employees. 22,000., 5 why did the numbers shrink so much? guest: this is another step the postal service has been taking through the use of attrition, early retirement programs, they have been aggressively cutting the workforce. they have managed to avoid layoffs. they have been using just about every other tool at their disposal to reduce the workforce. they want to get it down to around 400,000 career employees the next couple of years. they are doing everything they can to bring it down.
as recently as 2000, it was 800,000 employees. that gives you an idea of the magnitude of the shift. host: joe joins us on the independent line. caller: i want to talk about junk mail. the gentleman was talking about how they make money on junk mail. junk mail is subsidized. the rates are cheaper than we pay for first-class. it is cheaper to mail a big brochure than it is to mail a postcard. junkere was any profit in mail, ups and fedex would be delivering it. if the federal service -- postal service cut out junk mail or charge them the same we pay for first-class ale, they would not have financial problems. so good, why not charge the first-class people the same thing they are charging the junk mail? because they cannot do it. there is no money in junk mail. we are wasting energy from the
post office. 99% of the stuff printed in the beautiful brochures in suppan the trash --winds up in the trash. the exacto not know pricing mechanisms for standard and junk mail. it is not as profitable as first-class mail. the postal service has a calculated strategy. their argument is even in the age of electronic medication -- communication, there is still value of putting rigid paper in front of a potential customer. a lot of my junk mail goes in the trash can we do look for the catalog and occasionally make a purchase. it continues to be an important source of revenue for the postal service that is growing a little bit if not just holding steady. there is an argument that the
postal service is subsidizing the cost of that or the products are not carrying their full weight. under the proposed price increase, i understand rates for standard mail would go up. host: here is an idea to increase customers. on about cutting money spent things like supporting racecars? made: back in 2000, they an ill-fated venture into sports marketing. they spent around $41 million sponsoring lance armstrong's cycling team. now they are trying to get the money back now that armstrong has admitted he was consistent sleep -- consistently doping during that time. the justice department
on behalf of the postal service intervened and wants the $41 million in sponsorship fees returned with damages amounting to another $20 million or so. i believe there will be a hearing in november on whether the suit can proceed. the postal service is trying. they have stopped the kinds of programs they stopped -- tried back then. it is not clear if they got much benefit from the exposure. host: democrats line, you are on with sean reilly talking about the postal service. caller: you mentioned earlier the republicans have been trying there would be good fiscal management for the postal service. pointyou were making that or the republicans were making that point, there has been no attempt to ensure the court system was physically prudent or that the army or navy work.
we know of all kinds of problems in the army and navy. the constitution of the united states says to not only provide post offices but post roads. my concern is they are not doing that. the attempt has been to to providehis opportunities to ups and fedex. the idea we will privatize everything the government does and turn it over to profit- making entities. if congress were meeting its responsibility under the constitution, they would be isuring the post office is -- do not have any knowledge of any situation where the congress has funded the postal roads. guest: that is an interesting question. most ofal service for its history was like any other federal agency. in 1970, congress decided it was
not tenable anymore. they spun it off as a sort of hybrid agency that would be part of the federal government but was supposed to be self- supporting. the argument the postal service is making now is congress needs to decide if it wants to continue down that road and give them the freedom to innovate so it can survive as a self- supporting entity or bring it back under the federal government and make it a taxpayer supported institution again. the ranking member laid out his priorities for postal reform. let's listen to what he has to say and you can expand on the proposals he's making. [video clip] threeill work with priorities in mind for the postal service should look to cutting cost. they have got to. theuld congratulate postmaster general on what he has done so far, but he has a way to go. we should look for more
revenues, not just through price increases but through ingenuity, waysdeas, new markets, and that do not unfairly allow the postal service to compete against the private sector. we should look to the taxpayers as the last resort. host: this is tied to legislative efforts. fill in the details. the bill, i think they would argue that is what they are attempting to do. they want to give the postal service the ability to expand into new revenue lines. there are a few things they can do grandfathered in from previous efforts. the postal service has cut costs significantly. they want to do it more. general'sster argument is it does not want to become a ward of the taxpayers again.
it does have a line of credit with the treasury. it has maxed out the $15 million limit --billion limit. if they cannot repay it, it becomes a liability for the taxpayers. buts attempting to do this, it has done as much as it can in terms of reducing costs and enhancing revenue as possible under the current legislative framework. that is why they are pleading with congress to act. only is this the legislation that looks at the postal service specifically? guest: there is a house bill that came out in july that would allow the postal service to go to five-day mail delivery. the senate and house bills will provide some relief on the retiree funding obligation. it will not eliminate it, but it would defer it for a couple of years and stretch out the payment schedule so it is not as aggressive as it is now.
both would allow the postal service the opening to begin theoring moving away from structure of the federal employees benefits programs. they have some similarities. this is a congress that only acts in a crisis. service egos of management steps is doing better than it was a year or two when they were concerned about running out of cash. they have enough to tide them through. it is better than where they were a year or two ago. as long as the postal service can pay its bills, i know the consensus from a lot of folks is congress is not going to move. host: republican line. caller: let me tell you where i stand for starters. i exclusively use the united states postal service or all of
my packages and parcels because i am proud of my country and i am not a fancy man. i sent five cards a year to relatives and close friends. i'm also a cigar aficionado. senator coburn is pushing the envelope when he criticizes the postmaster general. i think this guy is doing fine. i elected this man. i want to know what you think is the problem. this guy has a twitter account. he is communicating over the cheapest means possible. i have a good relationship with my mailman. let me get a sense of your stance. you seem like you are playing both sides. guest: i'm trying to provide an overall perspective on complicated issues and where everyone is coming from. if the postal service had more people like you use the postal
service, perhaps it would not be in the shape it is in. there are long-term structural changes in the economy and with the internet where people do not need to use the postal service as much as they did in the past. the agency is still operating under a regulatory framework and expectations that go back decades. host: brenda from virginia, independent line. caller: good morning. i think we can draw a parallel from the postal service to landline phone service. landline phone service has always been a private utility have beenut they under regulations to provide landline service all over the country like the post office has to provide daily mail delivery six days a week everywhere. what has happened is as the havenet and cell phones
changed the demand for land mines, we subsidized the provision of land lines to anyone who wants this through taxes on our phone system. i think it is unfair to expect the postal service can continue forrovide six-day service first-class mail anywhere in the country. guest: i think that is an excellent analogy. i know many people who no longer have land lines. they have given them up in favor of cell phones. requiredl service is to provide universal service all over the country. it might not make sense from a business perspective to deliver mail to nome, alaska, but the postal service has to do it. that is a cost it has to bear. if it were a completely privatized industry, it might find some way to avoid it. host: what about the notion of
door to door delivery? would that change perhaps? guest: both the house and senate bills would allow the postal service to go to cluster boxes where you do not get your mail delivered door-to-door. you have five or six mailboxes on a stand on the street and you have to walk a few hundred feet to pick it up. makedea would be to delivery more efficient and reduce the number of carriers. host: we are having a discussion about the postal service. here is andy from michigan. caller: i am a postal worker facing retirement after 38 years. i think what people do not we are our own business since 1970. we are still mandated by government not to make profit. there is a question on the table as far as $75 billion of our future retirement fund that has been given to congress.
there are a lot of people that depend on the postal service. i feel like the republican party is out to destroy it. guest: i cannot speak to the republicans, but the argument is they are trying to keep it viable. on the parte desire of both parties to keep the postal service viable and able to survive into the future. host: bill is up next from ohio on the republican line. caller: has congress considered paying for all of its free mailings? host: what do you mean? caller: congress gets a certain amount of free mailings each year. you are referring to the privilege. it is free to congress supported by taxpayers. i believe there is language in the house and senate bills that
would end this kind of thing for political mailings. the franking privilege has been a controversial topic in the past. is less important now because there are other alternatives to the mail in terms of getting in with with his vigilance -- constituents. host: let's hear from the postmaster general on thursday. [video clip] is a fundamental question to be answered about the future of the postal service. will the postal service be given the authority and flexibility that enables it to continue as a self funding entity? i believe everyone wants the answer to be yes. the postal service can be affable and pay down its debt. you can continue to provide secure, affordable, and reliable, universal service. it can continue to meet the needs of rural america. it can continue to drive economic growth.
it can continue to be a great place to work. if given flexibility and authority to adapt, you can meet all of these goals without becoming a burden to the american taxpayer. the choice is simple. greater flexibility now or massive taxpayer exposure and service degradation later. host: what is the likelihood they get that flexibility? guest: it is going to be tough. was not covering the postal service when the 2006 bill passed. i understand it took 10 years to get that bill through. there are serious efforts to begin another round of reform that began two years ago. we can mark our calendar's for 2020. i do not think it will take that long. it is a steep climb. service has backed
away from the cliff it was heading towards a couple of years ago. as a result, the pressure is off of congress to act. are soer issue is there many constituents affected by the postal service. they have many employees with four unions. there are a lot of different players. it is hard to get everyone behind a bill that is going to require some sacrifice from all of them. host: this is to just eliminate saturday delivery. bill from weston, ohio, republican line. caller: i have already been on. host: apologies about that. bob on the independent line. caller: i am in a partnership with my brothers farming in ohio. we also have a retail business i started in 1981 with 700 plus
customers, farmers, turf and lawn, pet feed, the whole thing. i have to accept change in my business. i am 66 years old. i'm always dealing with change. i pride myself with common sense. common sense says if you want to take care of the employees and make the post surface be on its own, it is simple. you deliver the mail every other day six days a week. it will not disrupt my business. it will not disrupt what i mail out every day. one day will not make a difference. it will solve everybody's problem. it is a commonsense change. should be done. guest: the postal service would like to eliminate saturday mail delivery. i do not think they have talked about trying to go to every other day delivery, or perhaps it may make sense down the road and is something to consider. host: how have the unions
reacted to the process? guest: they say they have sacrificed. either through the contract negotiation process or arbitration, they have given up a race is. -- pay raises. iny have seen increases benefit costs. the postal worker may not be laid off but may have to travel a significant distance to work at another plant. they say they are doing quite a bit for the postal service. in other argument is preserving saturday mail delivery, they say one of the vantage is the postal service has is it does deliver every day but sunday and that is a competitive advantage it needs to preserve. michigan, democrats
line. caller: i want to have you comment on the law that changed in 2006 that makes the postal service uncompetitive. i heard after that, they lost 95% of their contracts for packaging to fedex. along with that came lobbyists money to get the contracts to ship the postal packages. my understanding is the postal service only handles 10% of the government packages after that law. of course we will be uncompetitive when you stick a five dollar billion medical payment on them every year. letsh the government would my company fund our benefits that far in advance. guest: thank you. i am not familiar with the particulars of the postal service contracting efforts in that regard.
the postal service has a close relationship with fedex and ups, both delivering packages and using their aircraft to transport postal service packages. it is more of a symbiotic relationship than you would expect. host: bob from colorado on with sean reilly talking about the postal service. the house comes in a few minutes. bob from colorado, independent line. caller: i am on the republican line. i wonder if the federal employees will be subject to obamacare. that is my question. guest: a little bit off-topic. obamacare is meant to provide for -- insurance for people who do not currently have insurance. federal employees do have insurance. there was some language added by republican senator charles grassley a couple of years ago that provide -- requires
congress and congressional staff to participate in the exchange is set up under obamacare. the question is whether the government will continue to subsidize those and provide the same contribution to the premium cost it currently does. for the most part, i do not think federal employees who already have insurance will be required to participate in obamacare. host: what is the next step in the process? guest: the next step on the senate side will be to try to wheree bill to a markup the committee will consider it, make changes, and vote it out to send it on to cap --action by the full senate. i have not gotten direct words from either senator's staff. they may try to do that in the next couple of weeks. said there is
something in there for everyone to dislike. it should happen quickly. from "federallly times" talking about the postal service. the house is coming in to take up the continuing resolution bill passed down from the senate without the mechanism for defunding of the health-care law. john boehner is going to meet with the caucus at noon today to debate the next steps. stay close. here's the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., september 28, 2013. i hereby appoint the honorable chris stewart to act as speaker pro tempore on this day.